A Room With A View (1985) From the Novel By E. M. Forster

This is one of those movies that I could watch again and again. 
  1. The cast is perfect-creating memorable characters that decades later I still chuckle over: 
  • Dame Maggie Smith as Charlotte Barlett the fastidious chaperone (Freddy: “Why is she so…[makes face] Charlotte Barlett?” Lucy: “That’s because she IS Charlotte Bartlett.”   
  • Simon Calow as the Reverend,  Mr. Beebe — can’t see him now without picturing him running naked around the swimming hole “Come! Have a bathe!”
  • Helena Bonham Carter as our heroine, Lucy Honeychurch–young, passionate, willful…resisting the bridle of British social constraints. 
  • Julian Sands as the free spirit George Emerson– I will always picture him up a tree yelling “Faith! Love! Beauty!” and Denholm Elliott’s character, Mr. Emerson explaining, “He’s shouting his creed.”
  • Denholm Elliott —  I can’t remember who said it now, I suspect it may have been Sir John Geilgud — something about there are three actors who will always upstage you: children, dogs, and Denholm Elliott… whoever said it, it’s so true. I adore Denholm Elliott in this movie — he conveys such feeling, such soul–expresses so much emotion through his buggy, teary eyes.
  •  And then there’s Daniel Day Lewis as Cecil Vyse, Lucy’s intended. Hilarious!!
  • Rupert Graves portrays Lucy’s breezy, happy-go-lucky brother… reminds me of my own brother, Iggy.
  • Dame Judi Dench is Eleanor Lavish  

If you like a”costume thang” that is, a period story, this one is a radiant gem. Lucy meets the Emersons while in Florence and is attracted to unpretentious and peculiar George, but back in England, she feels pulled towards a betrothal to Cecil who has firmer social standing.  But she and Cecil don’t have much in common (thank goodness) and he doesn’t appreciate her. He sees her as a beautiful wife, not a person with interests and passion. When George reappears in her life, the lies she tells to others and herself begin to unravel.  Does one follow ones head or ones heart? 

A delightful romp of a romance.  

 

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